GREENVILLE, S.C. – Led by senior Nick Torrance's one-over par 217 for the tournament, the Jacksonville University men's golf team was able to charge the leaderboard and finish as the Furman Intercollegiate title runner-up with a 10-over par 874 combined score. The final 18-holes concluded Sunday as the Dolphins rallied late finishing five-under par over the last five holes.
JU notched its third top-two finish in a tournament this season and did it while beating two top-50 schools in Virginia Tech (31) and Troy (50). Torrance led the way for season-best tied for 16th-place finish after a career-low 67 in the first round.
"I'd been playing well back in Jacksonville but hadn't been able to perform in a tournament so I knew I had it in me," said Torrance who hadn't shot an even-par or better round this season. "It was nice to see it come together all in one day, but I was even more proud of our team. This was a team finish this week."
Torrance would card rounds of four-over and two-over par in the final two rounds and need contribution from the rest of the team as in the final day, JU would find itself as low as fifth place. All that would change late in the final with Franck Medale draining a 60-foot putt for an eagle-three to move to one-over par for the day.
"I looked at the leaderboard before the hole so I knew how important (the putt) was to the team finish," said Medale who finished with 71-82 and the 73 on the final 18.
In fifth place with five holes remaining, the Dolphins surged the leaderboard with a combined five-under par from four scores counting toward the team total. Medale's putt placed him at two-under par, Raul Pereda's birdie on hole No. 15 to finish one-under and Brett McKinnon's birdie on the final hole of the day completing the comeback.
"We really battled and I know everyone didn't play their absolute best, but we were able to post four-solid rounds every day and that's all that matters," said the veteran Torrance. "It's nice to see us beating top-50 schools. That definitely gives us confidence heading into conference."
It couldn't have come at a better time as all of JU's lineup now has knotted top-20 individual finishes as the regular season concludes and next on the docket is the Atlantic Sun Championship, April 19-21.
Georgia State won the tournament crown with a six-under par combined score, but Brandon Matthews of Temple took home individual honors with a 10-under par 206 round , three shots better than J.J. Grey of Georgia State in second.
"I was really encouraged by the play of our guys this tournament, especially with Nick," said head coach Mike Blackburn. "He always had the potential to shoot low, but they weren't coming as frequently as I know he would like them to. It was really good to see the total team effort we had today in cold conditions and the opportunities we have forthcoming."
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